It's been a complicated relationship for almost a year as the fate of the Argosy Casino has been up in the air.
Tonight, the Missouri River Historical Development held a meeting to decide whether it will work with Penn National for the long term.
For now, these two are on "speaking" terms. Tonight, MRHD decided at its meeting to put the past behind them, and move on with Penn National. Now we know there are a lot of players in this story, so let's break down these relationships.
It's like a soap opera. Penn National and MRHD have been in a relationship that kept the Argosy afloat. But as the deadline to keep dating approached, Penn decided to look for a new partner, as MRHD offered to stay together. Even though it was a day late and talked with another non-profit, in the end, Penn decided MRHD was the best choice, and MRHD agreed, because it's what's best for the community.
"We are very concerned about the employees, and there welfare and we hope we are doing everything we can to keep them employed and going in the situation they are in," said Mark Monson, Head of MRHD.
And he's not alone.
Several Argosy employees and members of the community came out to the Holiday Inn today to send a message to MRHD.
"We go to work, we shop, we support our families, our kids go to school here, so we just wanted them to remember that the decision that they make impacts our lives, and the continuation of them in this community," said Tasha Barker, Compliance Manager at the Argosy Casino.
The livelihoods of 325 employees and their families are at stake. But the deal isn't signed, sealed and delivered just yet.
"The matter is before Iowa Racing and Gaming, it's really up to the Commission. It's in the hands of Iowa Racing and Gaming, and we will do whatever needs to be done with them to move forward," said Monson.
Simply said: Iowa Racing and Gaming will make the final decision.
The original contract between MRHD and Penn is up on July 6th.
However, the next Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission meeting is July 12th. The big question that now remains is, will the IRGC meet before the 12th, to discuss the new extension between MRHD and Penn, or will the boat be forced to close for at least a week?
We'll just have to wait and see.